HAVE A GREAT EVENING!
HAVE A GREAT EVENING!
ELIZABETH PALMER /
CBS NEWS/ May 13, 2013, 2:31 AM
ISLAMABAD – Pakistanis were mesmerized last week by the spectacle of candidate Imran Khan toppling backwards off a fork-lift at a campaign rally just days before national parliamentary elections.
Grainy pictures of the fall and Khan’s emotional appeal to his supporters later — wearing a neck brace in a hospital bed — elbowed other news stories aside.
In ordinary circumstances, one story in particular would have grabbed much bigger headlines last week.
On Thursday, Peshawar High Court Chief Justice Dost Muhammad Khan ruled that U.S. drone strikes on Pakistani territory are illegal, inhumane and a violation of the United Nations charter on human rights.
Some call it the Student Loan Bubble — I call it crazy. And what better time to discuss student debt insanity than now, as countless soon-to-be graduates prepare to slip on their caps and gowns? An estimated 1.8 million students are graduating this year, many with degrees that perhaps aren’t worth a damn when it comes to actually getting a job. Nevertheless, many of them will soon be paying back the tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars they borrowed to get those nice degrees, and I wonder how many will regret the decision to spend what they spent as they see their interest compound and principals skyrocket through cycles of deferment and forbearance. The college experience can be an amazing one, but is it really worth the cost? (And I’m not just talking about tuition.)
To get at the heart of this question, I recently commissioned a poll that asked adults of all ages about student loans. We asked how much student debt is okay, and how much is too much. One in five senior citizens and almost a quarter of adults between the ages of 35 to 49 agree that $20,000 to $50,000 in student loan debt is too much to borrow. Maybe that’s because they are in the age range of folks in a position to hire young people. Maybe it’s because college didn’t used to cost so much. At any rate, people of college age, between 18 and 24, disagreed with the old folks; only 16 percent said graduating with that much debt is too much.
Reporter, The Daily Caller News Foundation
“Massachusetts Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren introduced legislation this week that would increase federal student loan subsidies by lowering interest rates for a year and funding them through the Federal Reserve.
The bill is called the Bank on Student Loans Fairness Act, and represents Warren’s solution to the student debt crisis. It would set interest rates for federally-subsidized student loans at 0.75 percent for one year.
The current interest rate is 3.4 percent, but will double on July 1st unless Congress intervenes.” [QUOTE]
With some student loan rates set to double on July 1 — from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent — Warren’s bill would reduce student loan interest rates to 0.75 percent, opening the Fed’s discount window to students.
“Every single day, this country invests in big banks by lending them money at near-zero rates,” Warren told The Huffington Post. “We should make the same kind of investment lending money to students, who are trying to get an education.”
The freshman senator said she plans to mobilize students — those most affected by student loans — to help get the bill through the Senate. “This is about their lives and if they are active in this fight, we can make this change,” Warren said.
The Fed justifies loaning money essentially for free to major banks so they can maintain liquidity during emergencies. But Warren noted that student loan debt also affects the economy. Research by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, reported by Washington Post’s Wonkblog, found that the amount of student loan debt of Americans under the age of 25 has doubled in less than a decade, from $10,649 in 2003 to $20,326 in 2012. Along with this increase in student debt comes a decrease in the likelihood someone will take out an auto loan or a home mortgage. That burden is a drag on the economy.
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